Posts Tagged "choice"

Nourish Your Life

Posted by on Apr 17, 2013 in Featured, Health, Quotes & Thoughts, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Nourish Your Life

Nourish Your Life

I’ve recently been reading a fascinating and enlightening book entitled “Healing Wise” by renowned herbalist Susun Weed. In it, she contrasts the Heroic and Scientific traditions with what she calls the “Wise Woman” tradition. The Wise Woman tradition heals by nourishing, and therefore its medicines are living foods (meaning unprocessed, whole, and wild). In the midst of our community Refresh at Source Centre, I am reflecting on the phenomenon of detoxing, and the greater paradigm in which such a practice is situated. Often, we approach detoxing, cleansing or dieting as a process of subtraction. We “cut” things out, usually things which we consider pleasurable (although guilt-inducing). We forbid ourselves the indulgence of these guilty pleasures–the complex carbs, the sugary treats, the fried or fatty foods–all of which give us pleasure through taste. I call this a deprivation model. There is a penitent element which constricts or even punishes desire, to achieve the higher purpose of purity. This is why, in my view, people find detoxing painful, difficult, and pleasure-less. This is why people “fail” at diets, or cannot sustain the shift in their physicality brought on by dieting or cleansing. This approach breeds resistance, rigidity and disempowerment. In other words, the deprivation model which holds subtraction as its primary action does not, and cannot, feed the individual in a meaningful and sustainable way. Of course, the foods these diets promote are often greatly nutritious and beneficial to the body. It is all in the paradigm and perspective one inhabits that determines the experience of such a commitment. We can impose change upon our external habits, but sustained transformation arises from within, from a paradigm of empowerment, abundance and resolve. (see last week’s Resolve blog). Ross Bridgeford, alkaline diet coach, recently touched upon this in a video posted on his website. In shifting ones diet towards alkalinity (meaning foods that are the opposite of acidic, and therefore promoting long term wellbeing) Ross advises that, rather than remove acidic foods from the diet, we instead simply add alkaline foods. By adding alkaline foods, such as organic greens, fresh fruits and vegetables, and alkaline water, the body increases its intake of essential nutrients without rules and restrictions. The yet more enlightening result, according to Ross, is that this process of adding nutrition provides the subconscious with the chance to “catch up” with the conscious mind, and become aligned with what really nourishes. The bodymind then gradually and voluntarily adopts alkalinity; the cravings for acidic foods are relinquished, and the hunger for nutritious, living foods enhanced. This result suggests that nourishment empowers, and deprivation weakens. A healthy diet however goes far beyond what we physically ingest. We can and do nourish (or deprive) ourselves with our thoughts, beliefs and actions . We are nourished by possibilities: of doing things differently, taking risks, experimenting, even “failing.” When we take a risk, we actually call something new into existence. When we nourish, we empower ourselves to be the answer to our own prayers. In the words of poet Galway Kinnel, “everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing”.  I hope that today and for all the days to come, you live this...

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Resolve

Posted by on Apr 9, 2013 in Featured, Health, Quotes & Thoughts, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Resolve

Resolve

A choice, irrespective of whether it is based on reasons why, comes from an individual resolve.  According to the the Vedas, the ancient spiritual texts of India, Sankalpa, or resolve, is the single most important element for an individual on their path. Resolve is the anchoring intention that holds one steady through the internal storms of confusion, doubt, resistance, rationalization and fear. I believe that resolve is beyond will power. Resolve is the confluence of universal and personal truth; it is awareness that strikes into action. Will power alone predicates itself on rules or restrictions, as in “I will not eat sugar anymore!”. These are external boundaries that emanate from the mind of the individual, holding them captive. When we make such declarations, we are exporting our power into external boundaries. Resolve on the other hand emanates from within, as a silent, but powerful choice: “I am honouring and celebrating life by nourishing myself.” Where will power can be severe, or constricting, resolve is an act of love. Resolve lives in the heart. Over the past few weeks as I have been ruminating on this topic, I’ve witnessed many inspiring stories of personal resolve from friends, and acquaintances. A common element that arose in every story was that none of these individuals committed to restricting themselves with rigid rules. They each held a personal intention, but also allowed themselves the freedom to act spontaneously. One friend whose intention was to quit smoking began noticing a subtle inner sense of repugnance for smoking, even when he indulged the urge. He increasingly began to identify with that quiet sense until he felt an unequivocal repugnance for cigarettes and quit successfully. Another friend had been practicing veganism for a little while, but allowed herself to indulge in KFC, after which she felt quite ill, and has not craved KFC since. Resolve extends from a paradigm of freedom and abundance. Creating external rules suggests that we do not trust ourselves with our choices. I’ve often heard people use language like “I’m not allowed,” “I can’t,” or “I’m not supposed to” with regards to lifestyles that they themselves have engineered. What I’ve also observed is that some folks are reticent about making commitments for fear of failure or mistake. Resolve has nothing to do with success or failure. Resolve weathers “slips” and continues to stand, to shine. Nor does it become dogmatic or punishing. Resolve empowers the individual with an awareness of their capacity for integrity, responsibility, resilience. It lives within each human being as a seed potential. It lives within you. As a gesture of my own resolve, I will share with you a recent commitment I have made. I have chosen to no  longer participate in factory farmed animal products. Because I made this choice from a place of love and reverence for life, I feel freer and more empowered when I contemplate it. It is my personal resolve to “be the change,” in Gandhi’s words. I share it with you as a gesture of faith in your own capacity for integrity, peace, and...

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Preparing for a Refresh

Posted by on Apr 4, 2013 in Featured, Health, How-To's, Quotes & Thoughts | Comments Off on Preparing for a Refresh

Preparing for a Refresh

(Image: ‘fresh fruit’ by adamr / FreeDigitalPhotos.net) There was a time a few years ago when I was really keen on detoxes and explored and tried all sorts. This has been less so in recent times. To be honest, there’s a part of me that views a detox as a deprivation and I fear withdrawal symptoms – not just headaches, potential nausea and general fatigue, but even angst and restlessness at not allowing myself to reach out for my old standbys of comfort. This April, I’m going to give it another go alongside my Source community. It’s springtime, a natural time to clean out and we’re taking a new approach. No deprivation model here, it’s actually about nourishment and there’s a lot of information available in-office and on the web, including some great talks we’re hosting in April. In the meantime, I’d love to share my approach on getting started. So first, I like (need) to take a few weeks to prepare, and I pick a time period where my schedule is relatively light or where there aren’t too many outings planned. For us, this is going to be the week of April 15th. I begin to prepare myself mentally with the gentle reminders that we (the whole mind-body-spirit that composes this ‘Lana’ thing) are going to be undergoing a detox. This is a voluntary thing and the result is going to be positive. This is something we all want and it is a time-limited thing. We can totally do this. I also create some intentions around what I would like to achieve – this will consist of physical intentions (like sleep better, feel more energized, improve my skin’s glow, and sure, drop a few pounds 😛 ) and also something more spiritual & emotional (I would like to gain more peace, feel more love, and gain greater clarity around decision-making). The next piece is some practical planning around what I’m going to need. What is the detox itself going to consist of? What are the foods and equipment I’m going to need to have in place to make this work? Generally for me, I know that I need to have food and plans set for the next 2 days ahead; this also means setting aside time in my calendar every day (or other) to grocery shop and plan for the 2 days after that. And so on for the duration of the cleanse. Primarily, I will eat lots of raw food, say good bye to sugar, gluten, dairy, coffee, all fried and processed foods and add lots of water, herbal teas, seaweed, and supplements. Here I also consider my Achilles foods – coffee, chocolate (and sweets in general) and bread. What is the game plan for dealing with these cravings? In my nourishing cleanse, I’m going to drink green tea so that will provide me with a caffeine fix but do it with healthy antioxidant goodness (In most, if not every cleanse, we eliminate caffeine). For my sweet tooth, I’ll turn to fruit or a banana smoothie. For bread, I may just try out a gluten-free bread. Depending on the type of detox you take on, there may be satisfying ways of taking the sting out. The truth is, there is a lot of healthy culinary satisfaction available that I’m not even aware of. This is the fun part. I’ve checked out some books and have found some recipes I’m really eager to try. Our bodies thrive on proper nourishment. It’s never my body that craves junk food, is it? No! It’s my monkey mind that plays this...

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The Intelligence Within

Posted by on Mar 22, 2013 in Featured, Health, How-To's, Quotes & Thoughts | Comments Off on The Intelligence Within

The Intelligence Within

(Image: ‘Serenity’ by Dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net) Have you ever heard the expressions: “Trust your gut” or “Listen to your heart”? Do you? Have you ever had a gut feeling about something? What happens when you have a gut feeling about something and you do not listen to what your body is trying to tell you? What happens when you do listen? I find when I can follow my gut, or my heart, that life flows with ease and good things come to me. In Chiropractic Philosophy one of our main tenets is that in each one of us there is an innate intelligence governing all function within our bodies and sending us messages to guide us in our lives. These “gut feelings” that we have are messages sent to us by our innate intelligence which is trying to get us to listen. In our society, due to the large volumes of information we deal with on a daily basis, we often spend a lot of time in our heads processing and analyzing our situation. We use our educated mind to make choices for ourselves and decide the paths we are going to take in our minds based on our previous life experience. Our educated mind was a blank slate when we were born and we have been accumulating knowledge and information to “educate” ourselves and survive in our lives. Our educated mind is finite and shaped by our personal experiences. On the other hand, our innate mind, is infinite and all knowing. When we can bypass our educated mind to be quiet and listen to our innate intelligence it will reveal the wisdom to us and guide us in our lives. This is not an easy task however, and it is a lifelong journey for those who choose. However, simply making the choice to become aware of your innate intelligence will make a profound difference in your ability to hear what it has to say. How can you connect more deeply to your innate intelligence? The first step is to become aware of your present state? So how do you know if you are connected to your innate intelligence, or to your heart? Here are 3 different areas to look at to help you know if you are connected. 1) How are you feeling?At any time you can check in to your emotional state. It is simple, when you are experiencing positive, joyful emotions, you know you are connected. If you are feeling negative, unhappy emotions, then you know you are not connected. 2) How are your energy levels?When your energy levels are abundant you are connected; when you have low energy you are not connected and are not following your heart. 3) What kind of language are you using?The type of language you are using is a reflection of your internal state. Using words like “I choose to…”, “I love to…”, “I want to…”, are signs that you are connected and doing things that come from your innate intelligence and are an expression of who you are. Words like “I have to…”, “I should…”, and “I need to…” are less connected expressions that imply that you are doing things that are not coming from your personal self-expression. These are all things that you can be aware of throughout your day and check in on a regular basis. If you feel that you are connected, great, keep doing what you are doing and notice the factors that are helping you be in a connected place. If you are not connected there are many different things that you can do...

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Celebrate Life

Posted by on Jan 24, 2013 in Featured, Health, Quotes & Thoughts, Short Entries | Comments Off on Celebrate Life

Celebrate Life

(Image: Trees_and_Shrubs_g75-Sunbeam_In_The_Forest / FreeDigitalPhotos.net) As we kick off a fresh new year and make new resolutions after all the holiday parties of 2012 have come to an end, let’s take a moment to ponder and celebrate this wonderful thing called life. Life, ah yes, a word to describe our vibrancy, motivations, births, deaths, daily happenings and special occasions.  A daydreamer myself, I often have fleeting thoughts on the purpose of life that captivate me for seconds before my mind is entranced by other thoughts… So what do you want from this life?  Are you living to your full potential?  Are you taking time to enjoy the wonders of nature?  Are you thankful for all the blessings you have?  Are you taking care of your body like a temple?  Are you striving for your goals and dreams?  Do you love what you do?  Are you doing something for YOU every single day?   Life is so short.  Enjoy every moment.  Keep your head up and smile bright. And always, always remember to express your love for others and especially love for yourself!   Wishing you a very happy, extraordinarily captivating and amazing new year ahead. Yours in health, Dr. Anita Rajan p.s. Need some help with your New Year’s or Life resolutions?  We’d love to help you get started on those here at Source Centre...

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